Sunday 14 February 2010

So Good They Named It Twice

A bit of fun to kick off the week, but something which might also have you banging your head against the wall...

The idea is simple. Think of books with titles which repeat the same word, or set of words, exactly. A made up example - Stuck, Stuck by Ina Book. There can be commas or exclamation marks or dashes, but no other words. No 'and', 'with', 'The' - unless, of course, they're repeated as well. I had to strike O, These Men, These Men by Angela Thirkell off my list, once I remembered about that 'O' at the beginning...

I daresay this would be quite easy to cheat at, but that's no fun - see which ones you can remember without having recourse to the internet or your bookshelves (checking suspicions is fine). I've been pondering it for a couple of days, and have come up with ten... In order to allow you to play along, I've put my answers in white text - so you can highlight them and have a look, but only when you've put your answers in the comment box...!

Enjoy, and don't blame me if it drives you a little bit crazy...

Faster! Faster! - EM Delafield
Author, Author - David Lodge
The Sea, The Sea - Iris Murdoch
Lucia, Lucia - Adriana Trigiani
Kiss Kiss - Roald Dahl
Absalom, Absalom! - William Faulkner
Speech! Speech! - Geoffrey Hill
Guards! Guards! - Terry Pratchett
Red Dog, Red Dog - Patrick Lane
Promises Promises - Adam Phillips

Highlight the text above to see which ones I came up with!


  1. Surprise, Surprise! by Agatha Christie (collection of short stories)
    I guess Chitty Chitty Bang Bang by Ian Fleming either doesn't count, or counts twice? ;) I also thought of A Daughter's A Daughter by AC writing as Mary Westmacott, but technically I guess that doesn't count either. I'll check back in after further ruminating. I caught my kids' cold and my brain is a bit foggy.

  2. I came straight to comments to add My Son My Son - to find someone had beaten me to it. But very happy to see another Howard Spring fan. This is arguably his best book and I would urge anyone to read it. Long out of print but freely available secondhand.

    Carol N

  3. Mandoa, Mandoa! by Winifred Holtby

  4. Absolom, Absolom by William Faulkner
    and My Son My Son by Howard Spring and oh gosh yes they are already there!

    This is a difficult one Simon!

  5. Toro! Toro! by Michael Morpurgo (I wouldn't have thought of this one if I hadn't just tripped on it in my son's room - is that cheating?)
    Also, if Chitty Chitty Bang Bang counts, then I've got to toss in Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin, Jr. and John Archambault (since I can recite it in my sleep). But I'm done for now as it does really distract one! I'm sure there would be tons more of these in the children's part of the library.

  6. Such fun! I thought of a few you listed and Mandoa! Mandoa! mentioned above but, other than those, my mind has gone blank.

  7. There's a novel called "Never, Never" by David Gaffney, which I must admit I didn't like very much!

  8. 'Set up, joke, Set up, joke' by Rob Long. Does 'How late it was, how late' count?

  9. Hmmmm..... I think I am out of this one. I cant think of a one. :)

  10. Drat! Mine are already taken... Wait! Just found a children's book called Boing, Boing!

    Ah, that feels better.

  11. Absalom! Absalom! by Faulkner
    The sea, The sea by Murdoch

    Well these came first to my mind and they are already taken!! drat!
    nothing comes to my mind unless I google


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